There are loads of options out there if you want to set up an Android-powered gaming console on your big screen. An ideal experience remains elusive for a number of reasons, from laggy Bluetooth controllers to limited libraries. Zrro (pronounced Zero) is hoping to change all that.
At first glance, Zrro looks like pretty much any other compact Android box — and that’s because it is. It’s powered by a quad-core chip clocked at 2.0GHz, and there’s 2GB of RAM and 16GB of internal storage rounding out the core components.
On the back you’ll find a pair of USB ports, as well as an HDMI output and Ethernet jack. Again, pretty standard fare for a box like this.
What sets Zrro apart is the controller that it comes with. It’s basically a giant touchpad.
The experience, then, is sort of like the display on your phone and the touchscreen have been separated — with the display jumping to your HDTV while you hold the Zrro touchpad.
Unlike most touchpads, however, you don’t actually have to touch its surface for movements to register. The pad is capable of tracking your fingers from as much as 3cm away.
In theory, any app or game in Google Play that works on a phone or tablet will just work on Zrro. That could be a major advantage over other Android consoles.
But there’s a big difference between using touchscreen controls on the same screen you’re looking at and using them while looking at a different screen.
It’s probably similar to the first-gen Steam Controller prototype with its dual trackpads, and that didn’t work out so well. Valve ditched the design and went with something much more traditional.
Those of you intrigued by Zrro and willing to gamble on can head over to Kickstarter and pledge. $149 is what it takes to secure a Zrro Box and Pad, at least for now. You’ll have to drop another $50 once the 150 early bird rewards have been snatched up.